How much of an age difference should you really have in a relationship?
May/December relationships are fairly common in Hollywood, which made the reports of a love connection between 26-year-old Scarlett Johansson and 50-year-old Sean Penn completely plausible. Although ScarJo’s rep denies the two are romantically involved, the rumors bring up an interesting question: how much of an age difference is too much?
FACT: women mature faster than men do. Thus, the guys you should be going for should be a bit older (cougarizing younger men when you really are a cougar – 40+ – is totally acceptable, by the way).
Guys blowing spitwads in your hair and then saying they did it because they ‘liked’ you stopped being cute when you were five (or was it ever really cute? Let’s be honest), but somehow it seems like most young’uns never really graduate from that maturity level. If you want a fling and don’t expect too much, sure, dating a younger guy is OK. But if you’re serious and ready to settle, don’t date down in age.
Scarlett had it right before when she was married to Ryan Reynolds, 34. The 8-year age difference may have been a wee bit much, but it’s definitely preferable to dating someone your dad’s age.
Ideally, you want someone who’s 4-6 years older than you are. You want a man who’s been there, done that, sowed his wild oats and is ready for a serious relationship with you. You also don’t want a man who’s so old that he’s already had a family of his own, which brings up a whole new slew of problems. Are you expected to play stepmommy when you’re not ready? Do you want kids? Chances are, since he’s already done that, he may not want more.
But when in doubt, I will say this: always date older. Like Stef Lang says in her song ‘Mr. Immature‘, “If I wanted a child then I would have had a baby…I need a man, not a boy who drives me crazy.” Well said, lady.